Dhaka, 19th June 2023.
Right based civil society leaders urged for track two diplomacy with civil society participation for expediting repatriation effort for Rohingya community. They urged international community and developed countries for meaningful dialogue with Myanmar government. They also urged, for participatory dialogue with host and refugee community in Cox’s Bazar for containing terrorism, rather than considering restrictive measures. Today CCNF a Cox’s Bazar based NGO network in cooperation with COAST Foundation has organized a webinar title “Rohingya Community & Humanitarian Face of Bangladesh” on the eve of observing 20th June World Refugee Day.
The webinar was presided over by Ms. Shireen Huq of Naripokkha, moderated by Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of CCNF & COAST. Key note presentation was given by Mr. Jahangir Alam CCNF & COAST. Panel and other speakers were, Dr. Gopal K Siwakoti, Chair, APRRN (Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network) Group on Durable Solutions, Mr. Gawher Nayeem Wahra of Disaster Forum, Mr. Asif Munir Independent Expert on Migration and Refugee, Mr. Abdul Latif Khan Independent Expert, Mr. Mujibul Islam, General Secretary Cox’s Bazar Press Club, Mr. AKM Jashim Uddin ADAB, Mr. Arifur Rahman CCNF & YPSA, Mr. Rahsed Mohamad Ali Chairman Hnila Union Parishad, Engineer Helel Uddin Member Rajapalong Union Parishad, and Mr. Abdul Alim of Action Aid.
In keynote presentation, Mr. Zahangir Alam emphasized participation of local government leaders in response management, he also said that, local NGO should be given leadership of field operaiton while international agencies should be remain for monitoring, fund raising and technical assistance. Mr. Mujibul Islam said that, there is no alternative other than repatriation, but until it’s happened, we respect our Honorable Prime Minister Shiekh Hasina’s commitment to maintain human dignity of Rohingya community.
Ms. Shireen Huq in her concluding speech said that, restrictive measure cannot be a solution in respect of containing terrorism both in camp and outside the camps. Let’s talk with both host and guest community, including participation of women, adolescent and children. She urged government and NGOs to convince international agencies on best experiences on population control that should be implemented for the refugee community.
Mr. Gawher Nayeem Wahra said that, there should be local resource mobilization in respect of meeting key demand of 1 million Rohingya community in respect of providing salt and dry fish from Cox’s Bazar and lungi from Sahajadpur. He also said that government should consider to sign on Geneva Convention on Refugees which will legitimize Bangladesh voice for Rohingya rights.
Mr. Asif Munir said that, we have experienced police and army personnel who worked with UN for refugee camps in different parts of the world, they should deployed and asked on how to contain terrorism with participation of community and with human face. He also urged to expedite commercial diplomacy with Mayamar government. Embargo and pressure does not work now a days. Government should allow pilot project on producing goods by refugees for outside of the camp.
M Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said that, civil societies should strengthen their communication with civil societies in ASEAN countries, bringing the issues different international forum like human rights council and help Rohingya diaspora to be organized.